Thursday, 26 November 2009

Mmmm, Shelf Porn

Of late I have developed a fascination with looking at pictures of bookshelves and DVD racks that are filled with all manner of goodies. This may make me sound very odd indeed, but I am not alone. There is a big interest in checking out another geek's collection, and that isn't confined to just comic geeks and movie buffs like myself and my friends.

Oh no, this is much more widespread than that, and you will find anyone with a penchant for collecting things is happy to show off their collection to other like-minded individuals (just don't touch anything or you'll ruin the Nm rating and I'll have to get everything slabbed again... you get the picture). It could be a morbid fascination with seeing what other people do with their collections that interests me, I dunno.

I love seeing how people display graphic novels, books and DVDs in their home. I am very much of the opinion that books and suchlike are pieces of furniture as well as sources of entertainment and enlightenment. They bring life to a room, and there is little I find more satisfying than arranging and rearranging my various collections. There is something remarkably soothing about it. Nerd Zen, if you will. It also makes me want to buy more. Mmm, books.

You see, there's a marketing strategy for publishers to get in on- show people a bunch of books in a row. Guaranteed to get any bibliophile/mental completist flinging cash at you. Why do you think Waterstones and their ilk get so much custom? Because they display their wares in a tantalizing fashion.

Shelf porn is a wondrous, beautiful thing that can elicit various reactions, from the usual 'Holy crap, that's an AWESOME collection' to the 'Why the hell would anyone want a full run of THAT?' right down to 'My God, that guy's got a kitchen full of comics' (that last one is true by the way- there's a stunning Shelf Porn thread online where a guy has the biggest collection of manga I've ever seen, and it fills literally every bit of his place).

Are we Shelf Porn addicts interested in hoarding for the sake of it? Hell no, we just love to gather and arrange and display the things we love in a manner we find inspiring and reassuring. Geeks are wonderfully odd like that. I love being one, even though my own system of displaying stuff kinds of fits rather too well with the crazy-paved state of mind I'm usually in.

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